Experimental and Unisex Names for Boys

Off-beat and/or not "all-boy" names I see appeal in. Many middles and some wearable firsts.
  1. Adair
    • Origin:

      Scottish and Irish
    • Meaning:

      "oak tree ford"
    • Description:

      Adair has flair, the grace of a Fred Astaire. It's a Scottish surname which came from the first name Edgar.
  2. Adrian
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "man of Adria"
    • Description:

      Adrian is one of those names that’s easy to picture on all kinds of people. From an active and energetic five-year-old to your great grandpa, from the coolest, breeziest guy you know, to the quiet, serious one, it’s no wonder Adrian has always made the US Top 500 since the early 20th century.
  3. Akira
    • Origin:

      Japanese
    • Meaning:

      "bright, intelligent"
    • Description:

      Akira is a popular Japanese name for both sexes that's migrated to the West because of its appearance in manga and video games. Akiro is a related name popular for boys.
  4. Akiva
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "to protect, shelter"
    • Description:

      Akiva has a distinguished scholarly pedigree and a lovely meaning. Its softer sound is very on trend for masculine names at the moment and is in line with more familiar monikers like Ezra, Elijah and Theo.
  5. Alchemy
    • Origin:

      Latin word name
    • Meaning:

      "a medieval chemical science"
    • Description:

      One of the most extreme of the new word names, recommended only to the most mystical-minded parents. Actor Lance Henriksen spelled his daughter's name Alchamy.
  6. Alder
    • Origin:

      English tree name or surname
    • Meaning:

      "old"
    • Description:

      Alder is an occasionally-used name that derives from an old English surname and also might refer to the alder tree, whose wood is used to make electric guitars.
  7. Amari
    • Origin:

      Hebrew, Sanskrit, Latin, Yoruba
    • Meaning:

      "eternal, goddess, loved, strength"
    • Description:

      Amari is a name that's rising in popularity for both boys and girls in the US, used last year for about 2000 baby boys and 1000 baby girls. It's among the Top 20 gender neutral names.
  8. Amory
    • Origin:

      German
    • Meaning:

      "industrious"
    • Description:

      Amory is the kind of executive-sounding surname name that became popular in the 1990s. Amory Blaine is the protagonist of the F. Scott Fitzgerald novel, This Side of Paradise.
  9. Andri
    • Origin:

      Icelandic
    • Meaning:

      "snowshoe"
    • Description:

      Similar to Andrew, but with a refreshingly different origin and meaning.
  10. Aqua
    • Origin:

      Color name
    • Description:

      One of the new color names that is catching on, invoking a calm, blue-green-sea feeling.
  11. Aquarius
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "water carrier"
    • Description:

      Astrological name retains a hippielike Age of Aquarius feel.
  12. Arbor
    • Origin:

      Latin
    • Meaning:

      "tree"
    • Description:

      Arbor is a quirky nature name with holiday vibes.
  13. Arden
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "valley of the eagle; high"
    • Description:

      Arden is a gender-neutral name that's sleek and stylish but always seems to bob just below the surface of popularity, despite ticking all the boxes with its fashionable two-syllable, N-ending shape and its awesome nature-inspired meanings. In the 2021 US statistics, 41 percent of the babies named Arden were boys to 59 percent girls.
  14. Ari
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Ariel, Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "lion of God"
    • Description:

      Ari, the short form of Ariel (or any other Ari- beginning name, such as Aristotle) stands up better as a boys’ name than its progenitor does. It is also short for Aristotle, as in Onassis, and is a prominent character on TV's Entourage -- the uberagent Ari Gold.
  15. Aristedes
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "son of the best"
    • Description:

      This name of an early Greek Christian philosopher comes wearing a robe and a long white beard.
  16. Arley
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "from the rabbit meadow"
    • Description:

      Sounds a bit like Harley pronounced with a cockney accent.
  17. Arliss
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "pledge"
    • Description:

      Best remembered as one of the boys in "Old Yeller" and the title of a late 1990s HBO sitcom, "Arliss," featuring sports agent Arliss Michaels. Also sometimes heard as a girl's name and a surname (as in early film star George Arliss).
  18. Arlo
    • Origin:

      Irish or English
    • Meaning:

      "between two hills"
    • Description:

      Quirky cool Arlo is now well and truly back. Last year it broke into the US Top 200 boy names and consistently ranks among the most popular boy names on Nameberry.
  19. Artemas
    • Origin:

      Greek
    • Meaning:

      "gift of Artemis, goddess of the hunt"
    • Description:

      This name has a nice mythological, historical, Three Musketeers-ish ring.
  20. Arwen
    • Origin:

      Literature, Sindarin
    • Meaning:

      "noble maiden"
    • Description:

      Arwen is well known as princess of the Elves in Tolkien's Lord of the Rings. The author took inspiration from Welsh for many of his character names, and indeed Arwen and its masculine counterpart Arwyn do have a modest history of use as legitimate Welsh names, deriving from the -wyn suffix ("fair, blessed") plus an intensifying prefix.